Homeland Security Wants Mozilla to Pull “Domain Seizure” Add-On Developers have created a Firefox add-on named “MAFIAA Fire,” with this add-on installed, Firefox users can continue to access domains that were formally seized by Homeland Security. The developers of this add-on find the Homeland Security’s recent trend of seizing domains under the guise of piracy prevention highly objectionable. When the ICE unit of the Homeland Security learned of this add-on they immediately requested that Mozilla remove it from their repositories, pointless as the add-on could be hosted and downloaded anywhere. Thankfully, Mozilla denied the request, arguing that censorship of that nature threatens the open internet. Their legal department added that they would comply with valid court orders, warrants, and legal mandates but had not yet received any such documents. The article linked above, shares a list of questions that Mozilla fired off to the ICE with the intention of learning exactly what grounds they felt this add-on deserved removal. The ICE never responded. Bravo Mozilla. Read the rest of this entry »
Michigan GOP Gives Anti-Bullying Bill A Loophole
In 2002, 14-year old Matt Eppling committed suicide after being at the receiving end of some rather severe bullying. To aid in combating this, Michigan lawmakers drafted a law that would effectively prohibit bullying. Sadly, the Republican majority Senate felt it necessary to add a clause that would essentially allow bullying when it was fueled by “moral convictions.” The clause states that the bill, “does not prohibit a statement of a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction of a school employee, school volunteer, pupil or a pupil’s parent or guardian.” The few Democrats in the Senate attempted to add specific categories where bullying would not be allowed, race, gender, sexual preference, but these suggestions were turned down. So this turned from a law to help protect students from harassment to, if you want to bully your fellow students, make sure you have a plausible case for “moral convictions.” While I can’t say for certain, I can make a fairly educated guess as to why this loophole was added, homosexuality. Christian conservatives want to be able to spew their venom at homosexuals without the risk of legal action.
- White House rejects pleas to legalize marijuana
Recently the White House made available a portal on their website where citizens could create petitions that would then be signed by other concerned citizens. Part of the policy was that any petition that gained 5,000 signatures within 30 days was guaranteed a response from the White House. Well, required narcotics officer, Neill Franklin started a petition with the goal of changing our government’s stance on marijuana legalization. Franklin’s petition ended up getting 17,000 signatures, coupled with the handful of other related petitions lead to a grand total of 150,000 signatures. As promised a response was received by anyone who signed, written by Gil Kerlikowske, director of National Drug Control Policy. Gil’s response was nothing more than canned, filled with references to poorly performed experiments and statistics that contradicted the findings of more truthful research. In fact, the loosely written response’s descriptions of drugs and ill side-effects could easily be applied to alcohol and tobacco. New petitions are being drafted, calling out Gil and demanding that he respond with non-canned answer that references reliable research and statistics, not junk science.
People leave their churches for numerous reasons all the time, be it, change of faith, disagreement with church’s direction or behavior of other members of the congregation. Regardless, this is a personal decision, between a person and God. No one in a church, pastor or otherwise gets to be the judge in response to the exit of a members. But it seems some Christians feel the best way to attract, keep, and bring back members is to lead by fear, scare people into faith. Leaving a person’s church is most likely not an easy decision, don’t compound that with guilt. Take for example this letter that someone received shortly after choosing to leave their church. Read the rest of this entry »
- Climate skeptics perform independent analysis, finally convinced Earth is getting warmer
Physicist, Richard Muller, who has expressed concerns regarding the accuracy of findings from climate science, in regards to global warming, started a project called Berkeley Earth to determine the true values of global warming. Last week, a draft of their findings was released and, not surprisingly, confirmed that the numerous other climate scientists have been coming to accurate conclusions, that the Earth is in fact getting warmer. After we’ve convinced everyone that the Earth is in fact experiencing rising temperatures then the real argument can begin. Is humanity responsible for this rise or is it part of a natural worldwide temperature fluctuation that occurs every great once in a while?